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Plug socket connected directly to RCD?

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by iMark, 23 Nov 2019.

  1. iMark

    iMark

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    Hi all,

    My very first post so be gentle!

    I’m not an electrician but I’m competent and won’t tackle anything complex.

    Whilst plastering, I discovered a plug socket (which is frequently used), is connected to the RCD. Now, I’m trying understand why this type of plug socket is being used. It was connected to the wall, exterior from the RCD in the kitchen, this normally has a door in front.l but placed it inside for safety.

    It has a ‘test current’ and ‘trip current’ buttons on, some sort of safety socket. Is this because it’s connected directly to the RCD?

    If this is a legal and safety requirement, what type of socket can I replace it with. It’s very ugly and the whole house has metal sockets and switches.

    Does anyone have any recommendations as I don’t want to buy a new socket that isn’t safe! Pictures attached.

    Cheers,
    Mark
     

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  2. EFLImpudence

    EFLImpudence

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    What do you mean - connected to an RCD? The socket has an integral RCD.

    All sockets now (used to be just ones used for outside equipment) must be covered by an RCD. Presumably your interior sockets are not.

    What do you mean - RCD in the kitchen?

    It IS an RCD. What do you mean - connected directly to the RCD?

    Get another socket with an integral RCD if there are no RCDs in the consumer unit.

    If it is outside -
    https://www.toolstation.com/bg-ip66-13a-rcd-switched-socket/p42694
     
  3. iMark

    iMark

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    Apologies, I’m using the wrong terminology. Whenever I’ve mentioned ‘RCD’ I meant the main fuse box, which is located in the kitchen and where this socket is attached to.

    Another mistake I said was ‘exterior’ by which I meant, outside (exterior) to the main fuse box, not exterior to the building.

    Sorry about that!
     
  4. JohnD

    JohnD

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    I can't see that it is " connected to the RCD"

    I can see a cable to the socket that looks like it goes into the consumer unit, but you don't show what it connects to.

    The socket is a type that used to be popular for equipment used outdoors, such as lawnmowers, because (if it is working properly) it will cut the supply in some kinds of fault. Do the test and reset buttons work?

    Yours is a Chint which is notoriously poor quality.
     
  5. EFLImpudence

    EFLImpudence

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    Ok. So, all is well, then - one like this, then -
    https://www.toolstation.com/rcd-switched-socket-white/p57256
     
  6. iMark

    iMark

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    The socket’s cable runs directly into the consumer unit and has its own fuse switch.

    Does this essentially mean that it’s just a normal socket. Just trying to work out why the previous owners used this type of socket and not a ‘normal’ one.
     
  7. JohnD

    JohnD

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    They probably used it for a lawnmower or something like that.
     
  8. iMark

    iMark

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    Ahhh ok, that makes sense. Even with no grass in the garden haha. But yeah, probably electrics that would be used outside.

    If I plan to never use the socket for outside use, just appliances inside, could I just install a ‘normal’ socket?
     
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  10. John D v2.0

    John D v2.0

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    Not really as the rules have moved on now and rcd protection is needed on all sockets for general use, and all wiring that's concealed in the surface of walls.
    Of course you could just go ahead, but to be compliant with the latest safety rules you wouldn't.
    Does the consumer unit above have rcds?
     
  11. iMark

    iMark

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    Yes it looks like it does. Had the electrics updated last year with a brand new unit. Pic attached.

    If this is the case, looks like I don’t need the socket to have an RCD as this was installed prior to the new unit.
     

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  12. EFLImpudence

    EFLImpudence

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    Correct - unless it is the MCB next to the main switch.

    Edit - I see now that it is not.
     
  13. iMark

    iMark

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    Sorry buddy, could you explain a little more about this. Don’t quite understand.
     
  14. EFLImpudence

    EFLImpudence

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    You have an MCB next to the Main Switch which is not covered by the RCDs,

    but I now see that this is not the one for the socket.
     
  15. iMark

    iMark

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    Great stuff, normal socket it is. Have no issue swapping over but just wanted to check it’s safe with this new setup.

    Thanks for all your help!
     
  16. flameport

    flameport

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    You may want to look at the photo again.
     
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